A non-governmental organisation, the Network for Democracy and Development (NDD) has urged Bishop Matthew Hassan Kukah to recuse himself from the General Abdulsalami Abubakar-led National Peace Committee over what it termed “his divisive public pronouncements.”*
The group in a statement issued by its National Coordinator, Tajudeen Alabede and Director Public Affairs, Dr Abdul-Wasi B. Moshood, described Kukah’s last Christmas message titled “A nation in search of vindication” as a “display of religious bigotry and tacit call for coup and war”.
Bishop Kukah, in the message, said “Every honest Nigerian knows that there is no way any non-Northern Muslim President could have done a fraction of what President Buhari has done by his nepotism and gotten away with it. There would have been a military coup a long time ago or we would have been at war. The President may have concluded that Christians will do nothing and will live with these actions. He may be right and we Christians cannot feel sorry that we have no pool of violence to draw from or threaten our country. However, God does not sleep. We can see from the inexplicable dilemma of his North.”
NDD stressed that “Bishop Kukah’s allusion to military coup and war as well as the insinuation that Muslims have a ‘pool of violence to draw from’ are strange, disheartening and condemnable. Given Nigeria’s painful experience of violence, military coups and war, no Nigerian, especially a highly placed religious leader, would be expected to use those words flippantly.”
The group further said it is worried about the state of insecurity in the country and condemns nepotism in its entirety, but noted that “Muslims in Nigeria cannot be held accountable for the actions of the government just because it is headed by a Muslim, the same way that Nigerian Christians cannot be held accountable for the actions of the governments that were headed by Christians in the past.